Last night, Roy Halladay was shelled for eight runs in an extra-inning loss to the Atlanta Braves, which was by far one of the worst outing of the Doc’s storied major league career. Today Halladay has left the club for personal reasons, with the underlying issue yet to be known.
Halladay was uncharacteristically off last night. He gave up 12 hits and tied a career-high by surrendering eight runs in a game the Philadelphia Phillies eventually lost, 15-13, in 11 innings. Halladay was hit hard for a grand slam by Braves catcher Brian McCann, and Halladay – who had entered the night 107-0 when his team gave him a four-run lead – squandered that lead away. If not for a pair of late extra-base hits from Carlos Ruiz, Halladay would have received the loss.
Halladay entered last night with a 3-2 mark and a 1.95 ERA in five starts this season, averaging his typical workmanlike 7.4 innings pitched per outing. His strikeouts were noticeably down though, his walks were higher than normal, and his velocity on his fastball was down into the high eighties. Halladay, who has led the National League in walks per nine innings each of the last three seasons, walked three consecutive batters the other day in a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates, the NL’s worst offensive team.
Halladay is 35 years old and he may be on the decline of his career. Then again, he may be battling an undisclosed injury. Or he is battling a serious personal issue, which seems likeliest following this morning’s news that he has left the team.